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End Sexual Harassment in Greek sports

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End Sexual Harassment in Greek sports

By Anny Zade

Sofia Bekatorou (R) and Aimillia Tsoulfa show off their medals 21 August 2004, during the awards ceremony for the Women’s Double-handed dinghy- pic credits Menahem Kahana

We wait anxiously to learn the extent of what could be a scandal in Greek water sports to surpass the Me Too movement, the campaign for women around the world fight back against sexual abuse and harassment.

Denying any wrongdoing, Aristeidis Adamopoulos has stepped down as vice president of the Hellenic Sailing Federation, soon after allegations were made against an unnamed person by the gold and bronze medallist Sofia Bekatorou.

Investigations continue and Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis is among those who have praised Ms Bekatorou for coming forward. She spoke of an alleged incident in 2000, saying she had kept silent so she could continue competing. She said that she chose to speak out now so that young athletes would be encouraged to share experiences.

As a fervent supporter of sailing, rowing, swimming, water polo and other aquatic sports, AllAboutShipping calls for all perpetrators of despicable acts to be brought to justice. There must be an end to monsters preying upon vulnerable entrants into sports competition at all levels, just as the Me Too campaigners exposed corruption and cover-ups in Hollywood. Too many lives have been ruined in amateur and professional sports in the US, UK and other nations.

We endorse the declaration by Mr Mitsotakis on Facebook: “Sofia bravely broke the chain of fear and silence, showing the way for the stigma of guilt to pass from the victim to the perpetrator,”

The Hellenic Sailing Federation said it had requested Mr Adamopoulos’s resignation to “preserve the prestige of the Federation” and facilitate further investigations.

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